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Moving Forward to the “New Normal”: A Conversation With Secretary Mike Kennealy

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At the beginning of 2020, the Massachusetts economy continued to be strong. We were well ahead of the forecasted benchmarks, unemployment was at its lowest rate, and there was $3.48 billion in the Commonwealth's “rainy day” (stabilization) fund. We had triggered a reduction in the personal income tax rate.

Then, COVID-19 arrived. A State of Emergency was called and our activities—economic and otherwise—came to a screeching halt. We essentially closed our economy. It has been called “a self-induced coma.” Although many concerns and questions remain about COVID-19, we are eager to reopen our economy to the extent possible and in a manner that protects our health and safety.

Governor Baker formed the Reopening Advisory Board, co-chaired by Lieutenant Governor Karyn Polito and Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, to advise the Administration on strategies to reopen the economy in phases based on health and safety metrics. The Reopening Advisory Board’s report, issued on May 18, includes Department of Public Health-approved workplace safety standards, industry frameworks, and customer protocols and guidelines for reopening the economy in four phases.

In this webinar, Secretary Kennealy will discuss the Reopening Advisory Board’s Report and recommendations. The Reopening Advisory Board’s Report—after a very focused but exhaustive process—will continue the public discussion among employers, institutions, organizations, government officials, workers, and others as we all go about the process of reopening. 


  • Secretary Mike Kennealy, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, and co-chair, Governor’s Reopening Advisory Board
  • William F. Kennedy, Moderator, chair, Public Policy, Nutter

Event details:
Wednesday, May 27, 2020

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